by Kathy Eide Casas
Where Art and Entertainment Meet Community!
Have you ever wanted to discover the “Arts”, but just never knew where to start? If so, then First Friday Visalia was designed especially for you! The revamped and revitalized First Friday Visalia is making a comeback in a big artistic way! Musicians, sculptors, poets, and painters are all a part of this exciting and free artistic adventure taking place throughout downtown Visalia.
The kickoff for the 2015 First Friday Downtown Visalia will be Friday, March 6, from 5:30 – 9:00 p.m. The historic Visalia Fox Theatre will serve as the Headquarters for this fun, artsy night that will be filled with a variety of options for art, music, and food lovers extraordinaire.
While at the Fox Theatre, guests can enjoy a light reception while finding detailed listings and maps of all the locations for that evening. Even better, First Friday Visalians can catch the free trolley at the Fox, a relaxing adventure that will take them to all of the different participating galleries. While on the trolley, a volunteer docent will be sharing history, pertinent information, and fun facts about the featured exhibitions.
As a special treat on Opening Night, the Tulare Symphony will be in open rehearsal at the Fox Theatre. Guests will be able to catch a “behind the scenes” look at the preparation that goes into a symphonic performance, while listening to the symphony’s rehearsal.
Erin Olm-Shipman, Program Coordinator for First Friday Downtown Visalia, is enthusiastic about all the dynamics that the Arts Consortium and First Friday Visalia have to offer with their new First Friday nights of arts. Much thought and planning has gone into making the First Fridays an experience to bring others under the “arts” umbrella. Erin explained, “We have spent a great deal of time planning how can we make this a truly successful and enjoyable evening for our community. We want to get people in the community out and experiencing art. Many times, people may want to get involved in the arts, but if they aren’t already connected, they can feel a little intimated.”
She continued, “First Friday Visalia is the bridge to bringing people into the art world and we will be working hard every first Friday to welcome the community to a new artistic experience. Visalia truly has a great vibrant art scene; really worth showing off, and we’re so excited to do just that!”
First Friday Downtown Visalia events will take place during the first Friday evening of each month, from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. During this time, downtown restaurants, retail shops, galleries, arts organizations, and other businesses will open their doors and invite the community to enjoy the work of a variety of artists, ranging from musicians and sculptors to poets and painters.
A special project of the Arts Consortium, and funded in part by the City of Visalia’s Community Arts Grant, the program is completely FREE to the general public.
Check out more of our arts & entertainment articles in our A & E Section.